When a Gettysburg area couple decide to get a divorce it is often an emotional and difficult time. Not only does a person mourn the loss of their marriage, they also have to deal with many complicated issues. Alimony may be a part of a divorce settlement depending on circumstances. In general, alimony is awarded when these conditions are present:
- Large difference between the two spouse’s incomes
- The marriage has lasted a long time.
- The spouse receiving alimony has a physical or mental disability.
- The spouse receiving alimony did not work because they were caring for the couple’s children.
In Pennsylvania there are three types of alimony that may be awarded.
Rehabilitative alimony provides temporary financial support to a person until they are able to become self-supporting. During this defined period of time a person would complete school, training, or other “rehabilitation” that will allow them to get a job and support themselves.
Permanent alimony is rarely awarded in Pennsylvania. It provides payments for the rest of the former spouse’s life or until that spouse remarries.
Reimbursement alimony is reimbursing a former spouse for expenses they incurred for the benefit of the other spouse. It could be paying for the other spouse’s education, medical debt, or marital expenses.
A legal professional who is skilled in family law can help their client understand their options for alimony. Alimony is not awarded automatically. It is awarded if the courts believe a person needs financial support to meet their financial needs and if the other spouse is able to pay for it.